Cape Breton's Magazine

> Issue 28 > Page 38 - A Story of the Micmac Chief, Ulgimoo

Page 38 - A Story of the Micmac Chief, Ulgimoo

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1981/6/1 (1690 reads)
 

ed that he was the celebrated chief UIgi? moo; but he was laughed at for his fears and cautions, and the old man was tied, bound to a tree, a quantity of dried wood piled round him, and the torch applied. As soon as the fire began to blaze, he made one spring, and was clear of all cords and green withes, tall, straight, young, and active, and ready for fight, "There!" said the man who had given his fellows the time? ly caution; "didn't I tell you it was UIgi? moo? Will you not believe me now? In a mom? ent your heads will be off," It was even so. One blow despatched him, and similar blows fell upon the rest; and only three of the whole army of several hundred men escaped, UIgimoo did not receive a scratch. The three that were not killed he took prisoners; he cut their ears, slit their noses and their cheeks, then bade them go home and carry the joyful tidings of their defeat, and be sure to tell that they were all slain by one Micmac, one hundred and three years old. When his men returned at night, they found the evidences of his victory; he was, how? ever, no longer a warrior, but had settled back into an infirm old man, walking about bending over a staff. It was the beginning of winter when he died; he had directed his people not to bury him, but to build a high flake and lay him on it. This they did, and all left the place. He had told them to come back the following spring. They did so; and to their astonishment they found him alive and walking about--exhibiting, however, proofs that his death was real, and not a sham. A hungry marten had found the corpse, and had gnawed an ugly-looking hole through one of the old man's cheeks; he still exhibited the gaping wound. The second time he died he was buried; and a small mound near the river at Amherst Point, in Cumberland, has the honor of be? ing his reputed resting-place. The day be? fore his death he informed his friends that he would die on the morrow, and that they must bury him; but after one night they must open the grave, and he would come out and remain with them forever. He gave them a sign by which they would know when to open the grave. The day would be clear, and there would be not even a sin? gle cloud to be seen; but from the clear, open sky there would come a peal of thun? der just at the time when the spirit would reanimate his clay. But he did not rise; his friends and his tribe preferred to let him remain in his resting-place. They not only did not dig him up, but took special care that he should not be able to get out of his grave, even should he come to life. Hence they dug his grave deep, and piled stones upon him to keep him down. The plan succeeded; he has never risen from the dead, Bernard Hoffman concludes that the Kwede1;h were "St. Lawrence Iroquois, that once held the south bank of the St. Lawrence from Montreal to the Gaspe Peninsula From the legendary ma? terial it is impossible for us to determine when the Kwedech- Micmac war started, but we may guess that 1500 would not be too early we have the following evidence (for the end of the war): (a) the war was still in progress in 1535, (b) the St. Lawrence Iroquois disappeared as a tribe by 1600, (c) the Micmac make no claim to be responsible for this disappearance, which is consistent with their legend that the war was re? solved by a peace treaty " Rand adds that UIgimoo or some one of his descendants appears in English history under the name of Agimow. The story of UIgimoo was taken from Rand's Legends of the Micmacs, 1894 (Johnson Reprint, 1971). Discount Jean Shop & Family Clothing Chebucto Street, Baddeck 295-2076 On Beautiful Isle Madame Acadian Campsite 3-Way or Partial Hook-ups Freshwater Lake June - September Arichat 226-2447 " KEN'S KITCHEN OF TBE SPECIALIZING IN Ponzos A N D Pizza 429 Prince Street, Sydney, 562-5538 • C. B. Shopping Plaza, Sydney River. 539-3983 20 Regent Street, North Sydney, 794-8248 • 611 Grand Lake Road, 539-3368 Reeves Street, Port Hawkesbury, 625-2230 Ponzo Originated in Cape Breton Let Us Fill Your Next Prescription Now Q Locations in Cape Breton to Serve You: PORT HAWKESBURY CENTRE 625-1404 CAPE BRETON SHOPPING PLAZA 564-8151 MAYFLOWER MALL 539-5080 Operated by Manson Drugs Ltd. Tires Our Specialty" C&S Enterprises Formerly Located West of Baddeck on the Trans-Canada Highway 24-Hour Towing Service 295-2911 Professional Welding 295-2911 (38)
Cape Breton's Magazine
  View this article in PDF format Print article



Adobe Acrobat Reader is required to the PDF version of this content. Click here to download and install the Acrobat plugin
Acrobat Reader Download